PBA Philippine Cup

‘This is the sweetest’: Maliksi puts historic Meralco title at top of all his championships

Delfin Dioquino

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

‘This is the sweetest’: Maliksi puts historic Meralco title at top of all his championships

ELATED. Allein Maliksi (left) in action for the Meralco Bolts in the 2024 PBA Philippine Cup.

PBA Images

A member of the San Mig Coffee crew that won a Grand Slam, Allein Maliksi says the Bolts' first championship tops his list as Meralco claims the PBA Philippine Cup throne

MANILA, Philippines – Allein Maliksi is a Grand Slam champion, but somehow, the joy of helping Meralco capture an elusive PBA crown exceeds the feeling of winning his other titles.

A member of the San Mig Coffee crew that completed a title sweep of the 2013-2014 season, Maliksi said the Bolts’ first championship tops his list as Meralco pulled off a giant upset against San Miguel for the Philippine Cup throne.

“This is the sweetest. I did not really feel much about my past championships. I was part of the team, but my role was not that big,” said Maliksi in a mix of Filipino and English.

“But this time, after all the heartbreaks, our hardship [paid off].”

Meralco lifting the prestigious All-Filipino trophy felt like a storybook ending to a campaign that got off to a shaky start.

At one point, the Bolts were at 11th place and in danger of missing the playoffs after dropping five of their first eight games before they wrapped up the elimination round on a three-game winning streak to clinch the No. 3 seed.

Making quick work of NLEX in quarterfinals, Meralco arranged a semifinal duel with longtime tormentor Barangay Ginebra, a team that beat the Bolts six times in their first seven playoff encounters, including four in the finals.

Teetering on the brink of elimination with a 2-3 deficit, Meralco won the last two games as it toppled the Gin Kings in a best-of-seven series for the first time.

A heavily favored Beermen crew that won six of the last eight Philippine Cup crowns waited in the finals, but the Bolts flipped the script and closed out the series in six games off a game-winner by Meralco star Chris Newsome.

“We started from the bottom and went through all of those do-or-die games from the eliminations to Game 7 against Ginebra,” said Maliksi, who bagged his fifth PBA title. “Finally we got one after all the finals we lost.”

“If we ever win another championship with Meralco, I think this will be the best,” he added. “I think nothing will ever exceed this championship.”

“This is the best that we’ve won, ever.”

Maliksi rose to the occasion as Meralco won the last two games of the finals after San Miguel pulled level at 2-2.

Limited to just 8.3 points on a dismal 25% clip from Games 2 to 4, Maliksi turned in his finest performance of the finals with 22 points on 59% shooting in their Game 5 win.

He then tallied 14 points and 3 rebounds as the Bolts escaped with a gripping 80-78 victory in Game 6 to wrap up the title series.

“I told myself, now is not the time to be gun-shy. I did not want to waste the opportunity to perform, to prove my game, to prove my work in the team.” said Maliksi.– Rappler.com

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI

How does this make you feel?

Download the Rappler App!
Person, Human, Clothing


Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.